Student Sex Work

This page will share resources/useful links to support individuals who are balancing involvement in both academia and the adult entertainment/sex industry. There is also further research regarding students and sex work in our research section. Any questions regarding this information please contact our email or fill out the form on the 'Contact Us' page.

Recent research has highlighted that rising costs of University fees and associated living expenses are seeing increasing numbers of students entering the sex industry reporting almost 5% of students had worked within it and 20% considered it. Students reported not feeling supported or receiving the help they needed whilst trying to both complete their studies and financially support themselves by working in the UK adult entertainment industry. They described experiences such as isolation, stigma and discrimination, whilst still having to keep their work secret for fear of repercussions from their universities (The Student Sex Work Project, 2015; NUS, 2016).

The Student Sex Work Project

The Student Sex Work Project was a three year project led by Swansea University which carried out extensive research and provided e-health services and support for students who were involved in the sex industry. There were 6,773 respondents mainly across Wales but also including the rest of the UK. Follow the links below the summary report of their research:

for their comprehensive website:

and training:

Student Sex Worker Research

In February 2016 the Women’s Campaign and the LGBT+ campaign, working with the Sex Workers Open University (SWOU) and the English Collective of Prostitutes (ECP) launched a survey to gather information on the lives and experiences of student sex workers. They survey was open for one month- between February to March 2016 and was promoted via online networks of the LGBT+ and Women’s campaign. They received 55 valid responses from students who have been involved in sex work at some point during their time in further or higher education. This research will be followed by more detailed qualitative analysis of the particular experiences of women and LGBT+ student sex workers.

Click here to access a downloadable version of the research

I was threatened with expulsion': Why sex workers at university fear speaking out'

Kate Lister (2019)

Gauging the exact number of students who are in sex work is almost impossible. As long as sex work remains stigmatised and criminalised, students, and indeed the sex work community at large, will be fearful to disclose the truth.

Read the full article here.

Student Sex Work Toolkit

A collaborative project between Sex Workers, Leicester University, researchers and practitioners, providing information for students who sex work regarding safe working practices and support available, and recommendations for staff in Higher Education regarding best practice when providing support. See below for downloadable versions of both the student toolkit and the staff version:

studenttoolkitFINALOct2020 (2)
Download PDF • 369KB

studentstafftoolkitfinal (2) (3)
Download PDF • 262KB

Blog post by Camille

Click here to read about Camille's experiences of being an out sex worker in academia, and here for more information about her work.

Click here to access briefings regarding student sex work from the ECP.

Save the Student

Save the Student provides free, impartial advice to students on how to balance their finances and make their money go further.



Support for Student Sex Workers

Organisation based in Manchester, run by former and current sex workers offering support/advice to individuals involved in all aspects of the sex industry

Revenge Porn Helpline

A UK service supporting adults (aged 18+) who are experiencing intimate image abuse, also known as, revenge porn. **(see more in our 'Resources' section)

Telephone (helpline): **see email below during the COVID-19 crisis



Downloadable welfare resource pack for student sex workers:

Contact Us



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